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Portland Comprehensive Plan Effective Date Likely Delayed to May 2018

December 21, 2017


The effective date of the new Portland Comprehensive Plan and Zoning Code has been delayed to at least May 24, 2018. These two related planning projects, begun a number of years ago, were subject to review and approval by the Department of Land Conservation and Development (DLCD).  On December 5, DLCD issued its approval of the two key planning work tasks, Tasks 4 and 5.  Task 4 includes new Comprehensive Plan goals and policies, Comprehensive Plan maps, a new Public Facilities Plan, and a revised Transportation System Plan.  Task 5 primarily includes the new Zoning Code and zoning maps necessary to implement the Comprehensive Plan.

Originally, the new Plan and Code were to become effective on January 1, 2018.  The City Council delayed this effective date to May 24 in anticipation of appeals of DLCD’s decision.  Appeals, if any, must be heard by the Land Conservation and Development Commission (LCDC), and appellants must file their appeal notices by December 26, 2017. Further appeals would go to the Oregon Court of Appeals.  The Multnomah Neighborhood Association is the group most expected to file an appeal after having submitted comments in opposition to the City’s “Middle Housing Policy,” designation of the neighborhood as a “Center,” and the City’s updated citizen participation policies.  Most other objections submitted to DLCD were related to the zoning of individual properties and did not address City-wide policies. 

Because the scope of appeals is limited to issues raised before DLCD during its review, these specific objections are unlikely to result in fundamental changes to the new Plan and Code the City has already adopted.  However, the delay in their effective date provides property owners and developers who may be adversely affected by the new Plan and Code an additional window of time to vest permit approvals under the City’s current land use regulations.


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